Saturday, June 23, 2018

Sour Cream Waffles

I am almost always more likely to have sour cream in my fridge than buttermilk, so these waffles are a winner in my book.  The cornmeal adds some nice texture and sweetness.

Sour Cream-Cornmeal Waffles (adapted from dawn of food)

1 cup all purpose flour
6 T cornmeal
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1-1/2 T sugar
1 cup sour cream
1 whole egg + 1 egg yolk
3 T melted butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup milk

1. Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the sour cream, eggs, butter, vanilla and milk.
3. Heat the waffle iron, spray with oil, and cook waffles until crispy.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Chocolate-Orange Scones

I love Zingerman's Bakehouse in Ann Arbor, but never get the chance to visit anymore since my sister moved away from Michigan.  These scones are from their recent cookbook, and are fabulous! They're perfectly tender with just the right amount of sugar.  As with most scone recipes, these are best fresh out of the oven, although they keep well for a couple of days if you have extras.

Chocolate-Orange Scones (adapted from Zingerman's Bakehouse)
Makes 12 scones

3 cups + 1-1/2 T flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 T baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut into small cubes
2/3 cup chocolate chips
Zest of 1 large orange
1-1/2 cups heavy cream

To finish:
Heavy cream or milk, for brushing on the scones
Sanding sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a large baking sheet with foil.
2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Cut in the butter using a pastry cutter or two knives. Stir in the chocolate chips and orange zest.
3. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients, add the heavy cream, and stir together with a fork. Gently knead the dough in the bowl about 6 times, until there is no loose flour remaining in the bowl.
4. Lightly flour your work surface, and turn out the dough onto the surface.  Divide into two pieces.  Pat each piece of dough into a disk about 1/2-inch thick.  Cut each disk into 6 wedges.
5. Arrange the scones on the lined baking sheet (you may need to bake on two sheets or in two batches depending on the size of your baking sheet).  Brush with cream or milk and sprinkle with sanding sugar.
6. Bake 18-20 minutes, until the bottoms of the scones are golden brown.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Instant Pot Bean Tacos with Lime-Cilantro Slaw

These tacos are a little more work than just opening a can of pinto beans, but it's very worth it and makes for a great weekend afternoon recipe.  The beans are super flavorful and rich with no meat added.  And, the tangy slaw complements the beans perfectly!  Leftovers make amazing nachos (pictured at the bottom of this post).

Instant Pot Bean Tacos with Lime-Cilantro Slaw (adapted from the Bobby and Damaris Show)
Serves 6

2 cups dried pinto beans
2 T vegetable oil
1 small onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 dried guajillo chile
Salt and pepper
2 T flour
2 T butter
1 cup grated sharp Cheddar
1 cup fire-roasted tomatoes (drain liquid before measuring)

For the slaw:
1-1/2 cups shredded green cabbage
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
Juice of 1 lime (about 1 1/2 tablespoons)
Salt and pepper

To serve:
Warm tortillas
Sour cream, guacamole, and/or any other toppings you like

1. Cover the beans with cold water and soak overnight or cover with boiling water and soak for about an hour.  Drain and set aside.
2. Set the Instant Pot to "Saute" and add the vegetable oil.  Add the onion, pepper, and garlic and saute for a few minutes, until just softened.  Add the cumin and paprika and saute for about 30 seconds.  Add the beans, guajillo chili, and enough water to cover the beans (about 2 cups).
3. Place the lid on the Instant Pot and select the "Bean/Chili" option.  Make sure the lid is sealed.
4. Once the Instant Pot beeps, combine the flour and butter in a small pot or skillet.  Stir to create a paste and cook over medium-low heat until the mixture browns, around 3 minutes.
5. Release any remaining pressure, and remove the guajillo chili from the beans.  Add the flour-butter mixture and stir to combine.  Select the "Saute" function and bring the beans to a simmer.  Add the cheese and tomatoes, and cook until the mixture thickens, stirring often (5-10 minutes).  Season with salt and pepper.
6. Make the slaw. Combine the cabbage, cilantro, and lime in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
7. Assemble the tacos -- on each tortilla, layer beans, slaw, and any toppings you like.  Yum!

Monday, June 11, 2018

Orange-Poppy Seed Loaf Cake

This loaf cake is sweet, tender, and -- let's be honest -- perfect for breakfast!  You could use all Greek yogurt/sour cream/ricotta cheese for the dairy; I just used what I had handy in the fridge.  The icing is definitely what makes this cake, so don't skip it!

Orange-Poppy Seed Loaf Cake (adapted from epicurious)
Makes 1 loaf cake

Oil spray
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp kosher salt
Finely grated zest of 1 large orange (about 1 T)
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp ground vanilla beans or 1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt or sour cream
1/4 cup ricotta cheese
5 T freshly squeezed orange juice
1 T poppy seeds

For the topping
4 T freshly squeezed orange juice, divided
1/2 cup powdered sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a loaf pan with oil.
2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the orange zest and sugar.  Rub together with your fingers until the sugar clumps and the mixture is very fragrant.  Add the eggs, oil, and vanilla, and beat on high speed until light and thick, 4 minutes or so.
4. Reduce speed to low and mix in half the dry ingredients.  Add the yogurt and ricotta and mix on low to combine, followed by the remaining dry ingredients. Beat in the orange juice and poppy seeds until everything is well combined.
5. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top, and bake 50-60 minutes.  A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean.
6. Transfer the pan to a wire rack.  Poke holes in the top of the cake, and brush with 3 T of the orange juice.  Let rest 15 minutes, then run a knife around the sides to loosen and turn cake out.  Transfer to rack and let cool completely.
7. Whisk together the powdered sugar and remaining 1 T orange juice.  Spread a thin layer over the cake and let set before serving.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Beef-and-Bean Skillet with Cornbread Topping

This is an excellent one-pot dinner. The filling is savory and delicious, and the cornbread topping is tender and just all-around yummy.  You can also save time by using a cornbread mix for the topping.  The filling could be easily switched up by doubling the beans or subbing ground turkey for the ground beef.  Leftovers are a little messy but re-heat well.

Beef-and-Bean Skillet with Cornbread Topping (adapted from Food Network's The Kitchen and Budget Bytes)

1 pound ground beef
1/2 medium onion, minced
1 small bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Roma tomato, seeded and chopped
15-ounce can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
15-ounce can tomato sauce
1 cup grated Cheddar cheese

For the cornbread topping:
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 T sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
1 egg yolk
2 T vegetable oil

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. In an oven-proof skillet, brown the ground beef over medium-high heat.  Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain, and then pour off the excess fat.
3. Reduce the heat to medium and add the minced onion. Cook until softened, 5 minutes or so.  Add the bell pepper and jalapeno, and cook for another 5 minutes or so, stirring often.  Add the garlic, and stir together for about 30 seconds or so.
4. Add the chopped tomato, pinto beans, and tomato sauce and stir to combine.  Add the beef back to the skillet.  Cook, stirring often, until everything is heated through.
5. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the beef-bean mixture.
6. Make the cornbread topping.  Whisk together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, egg yolk, and oil.  Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and stir quickly with a fork until just combined (a few lumps are fine).
7. Spoon the cornmeal batter over the beef-bean mixture and spread into an even layer.  Bake until the cornbread topping is baked through and browned on top, 15-20 minutes.  Serve hot.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Warm German Potato Salad

This potato salad is awesome with bratwurst.  I cook my potatoes in the Instant Pot (instructions below), but of course you can make yours on the stove as well.  The sauce is sharp and tangy, and the bacon adds just the right amount of both richness and crispy texture. Great for a cookout!

Warm German Potato Salad (adapted from Budget Bytes)
Serves 3-4

1-1/2 pounds mini Yukon gold potatoes (or other small potatoes)
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tsp whole grain mustard
2 tsp white sugar
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
4 oz. bacon. chopped into small pieces
4 scallions, white and green parts chopped and kept separate

1. Halve the potatoes, if needed, and cook until tender (4 minutes on high pressure in the Instant Pot, or just cook on the stove).
2. Whisk together the vinegar, mustard, sugar, pepper, and salt in a small bowl.
3. In a large non-stick skillet, cook the bacon until crispy over medium heat.  Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon from the fat, and add the white parts of the scallions.  Cook until just softened, then turn off the heat.
4. Stir the vinegar mixture into the bacon fat, until everything is well combined.  Combine the sauce, potatoes, bacon, and green parts of the scallions.  Taste and add more salt if needed.  Serve warm.